Why Chip LaMarca Should Never Be Broward Mayor



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Broward County Commissioner Chip LaMarca has spent a lot of time and political capital, both privately and publicly, trying to convince his colleagues to make him Mayor of Broward County. The position of Broward Mayor is largely ceremonial, yet Comm. LaMarca has spent years going after the position to no avail. Comm. LaMarca and his allies have lamented that the only reason that he hasn’t been elected Broward Mayor is that he is a Republican, which some have claimed is unfair discrimination. While party affiliation should be and is a factor, in this case it is not the main reason why Comm. LaMarca has never held the position he so covets.

The fact is that Comm. LaMarca does not represent the majority view of Broward residents on many key issues. That is the reason why he has never, and should never, be Mayor of Broward County.



Chip LaMarca


Chip LaMarca (left):  He shouldn’t be Broward mayor


The Mayor of Broward County is the face and voice of the county despite the fact that the Mayor has virtually no more power or authority than a regular commissioner. The face and voice of the county should be someone who represents the majority view of the county in the vast number of circumstances. This is a standard that Comm. LaMarca routinely falls well short of meeting. He regularly votes in a manner that is antithetical to how the majority of Broward residents feel on issues important to our community.

The most recent example of this is that he voted against a resolution saying that Broward County is a welcoming county when it comes to our immigrant community. This resolution didn’t criticize anyone as it easily could have, but Comm. LaMarca couldn’t bring himself to support a simple statement of inclusiveness that his colleagues unanimously supported.

Any notion that Comm. LaMarca could or would modulate his personal opinions to that of a majority of Broward residents as Mayor, when they differ, is belied by his continuously aggressive efforts to become Mayor. There is not a single issue or priority that Comm. LaMarca could move forward as Mayor that he hasn’t been able to try and move forward in his six plus years as a commissioner.

Becoming Mayor is all about Comm. LaMarca.

Now, blaming politicians for trying to advance their own political career (which is a bi-partisan endeavor) is like blaming a dog for barking. You can do it, but it says more about you than it does about them. That being said, the fact that Comm. LaMarca has spent a lot of his political capital on trying to become Mayor instead of on an issue that affects more than a constituency of one foreshadows how Comm. LaMarca would behave if he ever became Mayor.

The Broward County Commission is a partisan governing body per the County Charter, so anyone who says that Comm. LaMarca’s Republicanism shouldn’t come into play is either ignorant to that fact, is naïve, or is being disingenuous. Broward Democrats should consider having a Republican Mayor right after a Republican majority in Tallahassee or Washington, D.C. elects a Democrat as Speaker of the House or Senate President/Majority Leader.

The Florida Senate does have some Democratic committee chairs despite a GOP majority, but that is analogous to having Comm. LaMarca being the commission appointee on various boards (which he is) and not to being the leader of the entire governing body.

The commission and the community in Broward is more heavily slanted toward one political party than the state and the country. Having Comm. LaMarca as Broward Mayor would be a bigger stretch than having Nancy Pelosi elected as Speaker of the US House of Representatives.

To the victor goes the spoils is a cliché for a reason. A majority of registered voters in Broward are Democrats. Republicans aren’t even second as the number of voters as No Party Affiliation (NPA) exceeds that of voters registered with the GOP. Any minority group has rights and should have their voice heard, but this is not an instance of Comm. LaMarca being silenced as he has never hesitated to use the public platform that is at his disposal. I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that there are even some benefits to having a Republican on the Broward County Commission as I have always thought that the best ideas come when people from different ideological perspectives partake in honest and courteous discourse. I personally like Comm. LaMarca, as do his fellow commissioners, but he will never be Broward Mayor and should stop trying as his Democratic colleagues are rightfully reflecting the will of our community.

(Sean Phillippi is a Democratic strategist and consultant based in Broward County. He has worked for campaigns on the federal, state, and local levels, including the Florida Democratic Party and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Sean is the Managing Member of TLE Analytics LLC, the political data and consulting firm he founded in 2012.)


25 Responses to “Why Chip LaMarca Should Never Be Broward Mayor”

  1. Broward Voter says:

    I disagree. It had everything to do with his party affiliation.

    He is an elected colleague serving on that body no different than anyone else except his party affiliation, which should not matter when selecting a county mayor. Which really amounts to a one-year term as commission chair.

    The same slight was done to Jim Scott despite many respected years as a Broward legislator, including his service as Senate President, all before serving as a County Commissioner. He was likewise disgracefully treated.

    In fact, after passing Scott up, they still had the nerve to ask his help in Tallahassee. Which Scott, being a complete gentleman, provided despite being treated most disrespectfully.

    Party affiliation is not an appropriate basis to keep someone from serving a one-year term as weak mayor. It is discriminatory and offensive, not just generally but also to the district he represents. It creates bad blood against the entire county whose residents must suffer for the slight. It is a disgraceful and crass policy.

    And yes I am a Democrat.

  2. Oh please says:

    The amount of time and energy you took in writing this is laughable.

    Chip hasn’t spent a dime of political capital on this. He’s the lone Republican on a 9-member dais… he has no political capital with any of these people, all of which would gladly work against him should he ever have an opponent.

    He has, however obviously rented space in your head rent-free… which shows he’s making an impression.

  3. Chaz Stevens, Genius says:

    Hey, thanks for the photo caption, pointing out Chip was on the left.

    Quite helpful, because I couldn’t tell either jackass apart.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Notwithstanding the C.V. at the end of the piece, who is Sean Phillippi? Never heard of him.

    Chip has done more to advance this County’s interests than most. The constituency in this county is largely disinterested. If asked, and if they cared to respond, they would probably applaud Chip’s efforts to enhance tourism by protecting our beaches and advance business and industry by supporting the port. Chip should be Mayor. Compared to some of the other boobs on the commission, he deserves to be the figurehead of this County.

  5. Sam The Sham says:

    So, LaMarca being a Republican is not the only reason his colleagues won’t elect him mayor. It is also because he has the temerity, the gaul to actually think like a Republican.

    BTW, Seanny Boy, most Broward residents DO NOT want the county to be over run with illegals.

    The county Democraps are so greedy for power, so petty in thought and deed, so weak in their convictions, that they would never vote LaMarca or any other Republican in to a ceremonial role.

    It is way past time to reorganize these 7 dwarfs and get a strong mayor government.

  6. FDLE??? says:

    Chip was right in the middle of the mess at Broward Health until his BFF got dumped by the governor off the board. He was given a questionable job his only qualification being he could use his influence as a county commission.
    Chip would be an influence peddler as mayor.

  7. Talks like a politician says:

    This article is so lame. The author is a textbook example of a narrow minded liberal trying to stuff people into boxes based on party affiliation. Or gender, or race, or sexual preference, or age, or weight, or hair color, or shoe size, or IQ, or what car one drives, or what pet one prefers, etc. Some independent thinking is needed in Broward County.

  8. Wally says:

    You lost me at “largely ceremonial.” If that is the case than the rest of the drivel that came after that doesn’t matter. LaMarca is Republican and that is why he isn’t commissioner. Phillippi your argument is invalid because Holness is a Democrat too and has been skipped over as many times as LaMarca. Hmmmm… I wonder why that is? Maybe because this vote is basically the equivalent of voting for the Homecoming court and the mean girls aren’t voting for the outsiders?

    I voted for my commissioner to spend their time on things that they have a say in and the last time I checked they had no power over immigration. It’s a waste of county time and money to draft these irrelevant resolutions. It’s not the first time that they feel the need to insert themselves into issues that are not within their scope of responsibility and as a voter and a taxpayer I would like to say DO YOUR JOB and keep your nose out of stuff that you’re not voting on. I actually just watched the video of that vote and Phillippi neglected to mention that LaMarca’s point was that though the parents of his wife came from Havana in the 60s and is clearly sympathetic to immigrants, why have this pointless and useless resolution to hand over as ammunition to Tallahassee to use against Broward? What’s the point of that? To make a statement? News flash NO ONE CARES… the resolution was amended to eliminate words like “refuge” so WHY BOTHER?? PLEASE get off of your high horses, commission members. No one cares that we are welcoming and friendly unless they’re strolling on our beaches, checking in to one of our hotels or eating in one of our restaurants. Focus on the things you are directly responsible for and do what you are paid to do. And maybe the so called “inclusive” people up there on the dais will practice what they preach and vote for a Republican for mayor! As a matter of fact if they don’t maybe you should amend your ridiculous resolution to read “Broward is an Inclusive and welcoming county, unless you’re a white Republican who wants to be our mayor. Then, not so much”… So hypocritical!

  9. Democrats for Chip says:

    This entire write up is not only fair, but it’s not accurate to who Chip is. I can say a lot about Chip, but there is one thing for sure – he’s a team player. I also seriously doubt he is losing sleep or wasting political capital over this. *eye roll*

  10. Very relevant says:

    The vote for Mayor was months ago, who cares. Chip hasn’t said anything about discrimination since then… who cares

    I look forward to Sean doing future articles on such relevant topics as;

    1) Why Hillary lost the dem primary to Obama.
    2) Rexamination of Bill McBride’s run for Governor
    3) A retrospective of Scott Cowan
    4) E! True Hollywood Story of Jane Carroll
    5) Where are they now: Ed Stack

  11. Creidt to Sean Phillippi  says:

    LaMarca is usually red meat and a magnet for snarky comments around here. It is very telling that people overwhelmingly find Phillippi to be a major douche. Christ (pun intended), even Chaz busted on Sean.

  12. No No No says:

    LaMarca is not just a Republican. He is the former Republican chairman!!!He is also a Trump supporter. Trump received 31 percent in the last election. LaMarca represents northeast Broward. He has no business representing the rest of Broward, who has rejected his political philosophy.

  13. Nothing Wrong With Sean says:

    Don’t be fooled by the comments here. It is a desperate campaign by Chip to show he has support. Sean is a respected person in the Democratic Party.

  14. Anonymous says:

    A very well thought out argument. I know Chip personally and he would vote more in line with the other commissioners if it weren’t for a few of his, very conservative, backers. Chip, behind closed doors, does represent the average voter in Broward County. The Broward GOP have many national and local issues to get through before they can start pulling back some of the Dem and Ind voters.

  15. Chaz Stevens, Genius says:

    Hey Buddy;

    Perhaps you can remind your audience about Chip’s issue with a former employer’s credit card.

  16. Chaz Stevens, Genius says:


    Even a broken digital clock is right once a day.

  17. I know Comm Lamarca & I'm an NPA says:

    This guy Sean is a political hack and tried to co-opt the redistricting process with his convicted and jailed cohort Nick Steffens. I watch the politics of Broward County but don’t get involved personally.
    Having said that, I’m sure Lamarca won’t respond to this attack piece that was clearly blessed by Buddy. So let me say it: Lamarca isn’t a Trumper and he’s always stood tall for our local businesses and interests. His predecessors couldn’t get it done, but he got our beach finally fixed. He goes to gawd awful Tallahassee to talk to the leadership about funding for all of us in Broward. Does that sound like someone that shouldn’t get a chance at the seat?
    For those who really pay attention, he doesn’t use any political capital on this because his real capital is with us, the voters (D/R/NPA) and we got him elected.


    If Chip LaMarca wants to write something for Browardbeat.com, I would consider publishing it….anytime.

  18. Arthur in LBTS says:

    @12 I believe Chip is a supporter of his party. Where did you get this nonsense that he is a Trump supporter per se?

    Read below:

  19. Sheila Alu says:

    I couldn’t have said it better than Wally @8 “Broward is an Inclusive and welcoming county, unless you’re a white Republican who wants to be our mayor. Then, not so much”… So hypocritical!

    It’s really disingenuous for the County Commission (and most Liberal Democrats) who talk about inclusivity and mutual acceptance when this commission body has repeatedly voted to keep a Republican from the ceremonial mayoral position. They did the same thing to former Commissioner Jim Scott who was a true statesman and who could run circles around the entire County Commission. Sad! The Broward County Commission and liberals in general are such hypocrites and so out of touch with the American electorate. Just another reason why I switched parties.

    Sheila Alu
    Former Commissioner City of Sunrise
    Proud Republican!

  20. Beware of Alu says:

    Be careful about commenting on Alu’s comments she wmay sue the blog to get the ipaddress. Last year she was laughed out of court by Judge Gates when she tried to sue Jaablw for the up addresses of those who were critical of her.

  21. SCOwl says:

    Chip LaMarca is a hard working, dedicated Commissioner. If a Broward citizen has an issue, he is the most reliable Commissioner to ask for help in finding a resolution. He also understands that government should have a limited role in our lives, not a controlling one. I will continue to vote for him.

  22. Chaz Stevens, Genius says:

    Alu blows.

    Here, I will save you the trouble. My IP is

  23. City Activist Robert Walsh says:

    So Comm.Lamarca is this and that and is shady, so says this guy Sean Phillippi. In other words who cares. Chip is an d has been a very good comm. He has won that seat twice now. Third time around is the charmer. He goes to every function in the district. Presents himself well. (even shaves his legs). Looks like he just got out of a magazine. I suspect a clothes horse(good for u). Some of these other comments regarding the the hospt.bd and his appointments etc be careful Chip w/ u u appointment. Most just out for themselves. They want to squeeze cent they can get. Now is Chip heregetting sometime of compensation , then show the paper trail. If he’s guilty etc. i will be the first one to throw him under the bus for deceiving us. Until then dress to impress Chip, keep up th e good work and keep making the residents your 31 priority and u will be fine. And yes he should have been appointed mayor. Total bs. And comments from #19 u are the last person to commnet or judge(don’t get me started.(and u know why)…….

  24. Floridan says:

    I like Chip and although I don’t agree with all his positions, I think he is a good representative for his district.

    I do find it rather rich, however, to see Republicans advocating some sort of set-aside to ensure that [political] minorities have a bite of the apple.

  25. Resemblance is striking says:

    Is Sean Phillippi the long lost son of Chris Christie? They look alike, they both wear their pants up around their boob area and they both think that they are far more important than they really are! Chris Christie… YOU ARE THE FATHER!!